Yesterday he posted this absolutely hilarious picture on my Facebook wall. I think I need a poster-sized copy to hang on the wall over my desk. The Green Man (not what mine looks like, but an incredible picture), as fond as I am of him, just doesn’t tickle my funny bone in quite the same way.
Yet, I know that in the grand scheme of my typing and scribbling, that really, it’s a momentary fling–the flash and smile, the lure of a fun aside that draws me. The same thrill overtakes me when I hear of a new word processing program or thesaurus. It never lasts. A month later or more and I’m back, staring dreamily at my favorite inspirations seeing things within them that I had never noticed or reminiscing fondly over others.
Here are some of the tried and true:
Painters: Salvador Dali (of course), Heironymus Bosch, Albert Beirstadt, Thomas Kinkade (I love his use of color), Maxfield Parrish… There are far too many others to list. I’m quite fond of the Hudson River School, since panoramas appeal to me the most. But the biggest delight in a painting to the ability to look at it over and over again and find something new in it.
Ruins: It really doesn’t seem to matter what the ruins are of, whether an old farm house or an ancient city, an abandoned factory… Places like these hold stories. I’m a HUGE fan of Urban Exploration (although I am a rank amateur at it). Most of my stories involve a certain level of “rediscovery”. I’m a firm believer in the idea that the past was filled with ideas and creative invention that put the achievements of our modern times to pale. And at times, something shows up to suggest that I may be right.
Activities: Reading, walking, hiking, …. people-watching! The last is vital and must be done in so many different places. As much as I love hanging out and writing (and people watching) in Panera, it’ not the best place to take in a wide variety of human activities and behaviors.
A good reference library: March’s Thesaurus-Dictionary (I have two versions, an original 1926 printing and a reprint I bought in the ’90’s…both are priceless, in my opinion), at least one CRC (mine needs updating, if only because I don’t have that much tape), an adequate dictionary (an online one will do, but I tend to do a lot of pen and paper writing, so I like my well-taped ex-library copy of Webster’s), Kiss, Bow, or Shake Hands, and one of Emily Post’s Etiquette guides are all standards here.
I could go on, but if I do, I’m not doing the writing I need to get done. So I’ll list one last place for inspiration… myself. I couldn’t do it alone.